Study explores the power of MOOCs in blended learning

Dive Brief:

  • A review of five case studies that examined the use of MOOCs in blended courses identifies a host of challenges and opportunities faculty and MOOC developers should consider for the burgeoning format.
  • According to eCampus News, the meta study found MOOCs to have “substantial promise” as learning resources for traditional classrooms and as a way to give students exposure to more diverse teaching methods.
  • Challenges include a lack of cohesion if MOOCs are not fully integrated into blended course designs, intellectual property rights issues if MOOCs are restricted by their creators, and lower student satisfaction in online portions of courses because of less interaction with faculty.

Dive Insight:

When the first massive open online courses were introduced, people thought they would revolutionize higher education, opening access to anyone with an internet connection. Now we know the impact was not as great, and completion rates are quite low for students who enroll in MOOCs. Many students arriving on college campuses after a lifetime with the internet, however, are interested in more multimedia course content and interactive learning environments. MOOCs offer a way to meet this demand within the halls of traditional universities. Researchers have suggested MOOC providers offer their courses in more modular formats to facilitate such use. Faculty must take care to adjust their courses accordingly, however, as simply adding portions of MOOCs into an otherwise cohesive syllabus has not been especially well-received.

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Filed Under: Higher Ed Online Learning
Top image credit: Flickr; Alan Levine